He had heard of an abandoned house full of items and perfect for exploration through his good friend. He went late at night and pulled up a ways down the street as to not give away his intentions and look suspicious.
His friend had told him about this house so he knew just how to enter without being seen. There was a snow storm outside that also helped him enter without drawing attention. The neighbor's kitchen window faced the entrance so he had to be very sneaky.
Once inside he smelled a familiar smell and noticed a familiar sight as well. The smells of an old, abandoned, and decaying structure with the sight of forgotten belongings being claimed by the elements. His adrenaline started pumping and he quickly unloaded his camera equipment.
He started in the kitchen and by the looks of things, he knew this house was hiding something more than he usually comes across on his explorations. This house was completely left and forgotten. It still had medicines and spices in the cupboards. There were family pictures everywhere and small trinkets that were obviously special to someone at one point.
There was a hospital bed set up and by the looks of the owner's belongings, they had passed away sometime in the 80's.
While taking pictures of the kitchen and the adjacent bedroom, he noticed something that drew him to investigate. He found a yellow Home Hardware bag tucked behind the bed and after looking inside his jaw dropped and his palms started to sweat. He was at a loss on what to do and overly excited so he decided to step back, finish his exploration and make a plan of action.
Shortly after his discovery, his friend called him on his cell phone. He immediately told his friend of his findings and his friend said that he knew there was something in that house begging to be discovered. It was a feeling that both of them had right after entering the property that would eventually pay off huge.
He finished his exploration of the home and immediately got to work doing some research on the history of this place. He found out that the original owner had passed away in the home battling cancer. The home was left to her children who shortly after were faced with a horrible incident. For privacy reasons and out of respect, he does not want to share any of these details. The house was then passed on to three siblings who do not communicate and live a ways away. This unfortunate set of events lead to the house being in the condition it was.
After doing research on the owner's family, he was able to contact one of the siblings who now owned the property. "I started by telling her how odd this must sound and she may not like the story at the start, but to please hear me out! I am an urban explorer, I am part of a community who finds abandoned houses and takes photos of them. I recently photographed an abandoned house in (town) and I believe it may be your family home". She was upset with the fact that he enters people's properties and takes pictures without permission. He explained to her, "I take only photographs, leave only footprints". This eased her worries and he began to explain what he had found behind her grandmother's bed.
In the Home Hardware bag was $6,800 dollars tightly rolled up and rubber banded with dates written on them in pencil dating back to the 60's and 70's. He wanted to give it to its rightful owner before vandals and looters ransacked the home. The owner was confused, emotional, and upset and told him that she needed to talk with her husband. Thirty minutes after the phone call she called him back and requested that they meet at the home to discuss these incredible findings and his motives. It's not everyday you come across an abandoned house with money inside.
They met at the home and she began to give the explorer and his girlfriend a tour of the home. She started naming the people in the family photos and rummaging through the trinkets and things she remembered seeing from her childhood. She was very wary of his intentions so she brought her husband. After a few awkward moments, they became very comfortable with each other and started to have a conversation about the findings. He handed over the bag containing $6,800 assuring her that it was every single dollar he found. The granddaughter of the owner was in shock with his random act of kindness and started to cry.
She thanked him over and over, hugging him and his girlfriend. He said he was happy to have found it and return it to its rightful owner. That was a lot of cash and being dated he knew there was a story behind it. The property is somewhere in Canada and the granddaughter knew that her grandmother used to enjoy collecting American money. She operated a small fruit stand and it is possible that tourists would pay her in American money resulting in this large amount. The reason why it was never used to help with medical bills is unknown. Maybe she did not know the value of what she had collected over the years.
The rolls of cash had small tags with different dates and amounts written on them. Doing the math he found that this was a collection accrued over the span of roughly 15 years. This is a good chunk of change for the1960's and 70's which is why it seems rare that he would stumble across an abandoned house with money in it.
The urban explorer is a firm believer in karma and knows that he made the right decision in returning the treasure he found. This is every explorer's dream and he did the right thing, gaining respect from everyone who enjoys this hobby.
There were holes in the roof causing rapid deterioration of this property so it was a good thing that he found this money when he did. The granddaughter and her husband showed up with new boards to cover all the entrances and windows so they could preserve the property as much as possible until they figure out what to do with it.
This urban explorer was sure lucky to have found one of the home owners after such a tragic past. I can't imagine the phone call she received and the flood of emotions that must have been expressed. I would be irate hearing that someone was inside my property going through my belongings, forgotten about or not. Then to hear that $6,800 dollars was found and they want to return it. Well how could you be anything but grateful for that. It must have been a very awkward phone call with an incredible reward at the end of positivity, paying it forward as well as $6,800 dollars cash!